On Common Ground (2002)
for Percussion and Piano
Percussion Details: Marimba, Vibraphone, 2 suspended cymbals – 1 player
Duration: 8 min
Commission: newEar contemporary chamber ensemble
Premiere: newEar contemporary chamber ensemble-November 9, 2002; Kansas City, MO
Program Note: "If you meet a secretary, or a hostile partisan, never recognize the dividing lines; but meet on what common ground remains, - if only that the sun shines, and the rain rains for both; the area will widen very fast, and ere you know it the boundary mountains, on which the eye had fastened, have melted into air." (Ralph Waldo Emerson "Prudence").
“On Common Ground” was written for percussionist Mark Lowry and pianist Robert Pherigo for newEar's 10th anniversary season. It is a rhythmic excursion exploring the common ground between the two instruments. Lines in unison drift apart only to find their way back into similar places. The chorale-like passages throughout are the anchor of the piece, representing the common ground we explore in life and reminding us that "the sun shines, and the rain rains for both."